On Thanksgiving, most Americans sit at a table of their favorite foods and give thanks for the gifts bestowed upon them. They exchange stories, watch football, laugh and enjoy the presence of those they love.
For children involved in the Florida dependency court and child welfare systems, the intent and purpose of this tradition are lost through no fault of their own. From the child’s point of view, the occasion is a painful reminder that instead of sitting next to mom and dad, they are sitting at a table occupied by strangers or, at best, willing relatives. They are reminded of a harsh reality, their profound losses, uncertain status, and the reminder of what was and what might have been.